Human Resources and Skills Development Canada

Human Resources and Skills Development Canada

April 03, 2009 15:00 ET

Government of Canada Supports Youth Skills Development

LANGLEY, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - April 3, 2009) - Young people in British Columbia will get the chance to develop employment skills while also helping to conserve our environment thanks to federal and municipal support. Mr. Mark Warawa, Member of Parliament for Langley, made the announcement today on behalf of the Honourable Diane Finley, Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development.

"Today, more than ever, it is important that youth develop the skills needed to participate and succeed in the job market," said Mr. Warawa. "By supporting this project, we are not only helping youth in Langley gain the skills, knowledge and work experience they need to successfully enter the labour force, but we are also teaching youth to conserve our environment, ensuring a brighter future for us all."

The Langley Environmental Partners Society (LEPS) will receive more than $257,000 in federal funding through the Government of Canada's Skills Link program to deliver the Youth Enhancing Aquatic Habitat (YEAH) project. This 52-week project will help 20 youth overcome barriers to employment by teaching them the life and employment skills needed to make a smooth transition into the labour force, or a successful return to school. As part of the project, youth will develop a career plan, participate in a series of healthy living and social life skills workshops, and work in teams on environmental conservation and enhancement projects.

The Township of Langley provided $126,817 to the organization for this year's YEAH project. "Employment and the environment are two of the most important issues facing our society today, and young people play a key role in both," said His Worship Rick Green, Mayor of the Township of Langley. "This project will not only benefit LEPS and the young people involved, but also the community as a whole."

Skills Link is one of Canada's youth employment programs, and is part of the Government of Canada's strategy to create the best-educated, most-skilled and most flexible work force in the world. The Government underscored its commitment to create a strong work force in Canada's Economic Action Plan. A key component of the Plan is to create more and better opportunities for Canadian workers through skills development.

The Skills Link program is delivered by Service Canada, which provides one-stop personalized services for Government of Canada programs, services and benefits. For more information about this program, visit, call 1 800 O-Canada, or drop by your local Service Canada Centre.


Between April 1, 2009, and March 31, 2010, the Langley Environmental Partners Society (LEPS) will deliver the Youth Enhancing Aquatic Habitat (YEAH) project to help 20 youth facing barriers to employment make a smooth transition into the labour force, or return to school. Participation in the project will provide youth with employability and life skills through involvement in environmental community service projects and the development of a Career Action Plan.

LEPS was formed in 1993 with a mission to protect and restore the natural environment through education, cooperation and action. It is a non-profit, partnership-driven organization that works on a range of environmental issues throughout the Township of Langley and in adjacent jurisdictions. The organization brings together diverse groups of people, organizations and government agencies, with the common goal of increasing awareness of watershed stewardship issues and restoring watershed health.

The YEAH project is a joint venture through which LEPS works with the federal government, the Township of Langley and local developers to preserve native plants before developers begin work. LEPS' native plant salvage program removes native plants from areas slotted for development and transplants them in protected areas, such as parks and streamsides. The native plant salvage program works to increase the biodiversity of protected areas in order to provide more habitat space for native animals.

As part of the Government of Canada's Youth Employment Strategy, the Skills Link program is one of three Government of Canada programs that help young Canadians facing barriers to employment obtain career information, develop skills, gain work experience, find good jobs, and stay employed.

Skills Link focuses on helping youth facing barriers to employment, such as single parents, Aboriginal youth, young persons with disabilities, recent immigrants, youth living in rural and remote areas, and youth who have dropped out of high school. It offers a client-centred approach based on assessing an individual's specific needs. The program supports youth in developing basic and advanced employment skills. Eligible participants between 15 and 30 years of age-who are not receiving Employment Insurance benefits-are assisted through a coordinated approach, offering longer-term supports and services that can help them find and keep a job.

This news release is available in alternative formats upon request.

Contact Information

  • Office of Minister Finley
    Michelle Bakos
    Press Secretary
    Human Resources and Skills Development Canada
    Media Relations Office